|Yesterday 01:16 AM|
just a little feedback... I used the basic information presented in this thread to decide on my lighting for my 10 gallon work tank...
I'm running (1) 13W spiral CFL bulb and (1) 18W spiral CFL bulb in my stock hood (horizontally mounted, with aluminum foil glued on the inside of the hood to make it reflective). Running no CO2 (although I have been dosing a cap full of flourish excel once a week), currently lightly stocked and running for about 6 weeks or so since I planted it. Lights are on a timer to come on from 7am - 12pm then off for an hour (lunch time) then back on from 1pm - 4pm. Substrate is miracle grow capped with gravel capped with Tahitian moon sand (didn't like the brown gravel look after I made a mess planting)
I have DHG, HC, dwarf onion, vals, and a couple others that I can't remember the name of... the vals just melted (original leaves), but has new healthy growth and good roots growing on a couple plants that I can see the root growth from the side of the tank under the substrate.
Here are a couple pictures to show the growth...
first pic 10/22 just a day or so after planting, second pic was 12/3... the DHG is spreading nicely and starting to fill in. The HC I accidently siphoned some up which has been floating (trying to grow roots that I can replant it), but from what is still planted I don't think it has really spread, but it looks much healthier than it was in the first picture (it had been in my 55 for a couple months before transplanting in to this tank). I think it might be slowly spreading, it is on the side of the tank with the 18W bulb.
Nothing huge, but still pretty nice growth I think for a low tech tank (only my 2nd attempt at planting a tank, and its doing better than my 55 that I planted first).
|12-05-2013 04:11 PM|
low - 20-35 PAR
medium - 40-60 PAR
high - above 60 PAR
too high - above 90-100 PAR
I may change my mind next week, next month, etc.
|12-05-2013 06:26 AM|
This has been sooooo helpful. Thanks to all who put the time in to help newbies like myself have much better chances of success. My tank journal will credit this thread. I am building a rising fixture for my shop lights tomorrow!
I didn't realize it would ressurect this thread to the top of these forums and bump others down, sorry heh.
|11-25-2013 06:07 AM|
Values between 10-30 are considered low light.
Values between 30-80 are considered medium light.
Values between 80-120 are considered high light.
|10-30-2013 05:12 PM|
I think you're OK, the lighting will be slightly different with the U shape vs. the spiral shape I would guess, but should be fairly close I would think. This isn't an exact science, so the best we can do is get a good estimate unless you spend the money to get your own PAR data to run the tests on your specific set up.
I'm running a similar split, I have a 13W spiral CFL in my left and an 18W spiral CFL in my right (because I originally bought 2 of each and had the 18W's in but one of the 18W bulbs burned out within a day, must have been a bad light...) so I'm running 31W total vs. your 30W.
I am getting some pretty rapid algae growth though, so I might back down to two 13W bulbs because my tank is still cycling so can't add anything to help with the algae yet...
|10-28-2013 07:33 PM|
I bought some CFl bulbs that are marketed for aquarium use. They are twin U shaped (straight) tubes instead of spiral shaped and fit inside of a standard incandescent hood fixture. The 20 watt bulb is 8 inches and the 10 watt bulb is 5.5 inches overall and 4.5 inches and 3.5 inches respectively for the lighted tube section.
Here is a link to one of the bulbs I'm talking about-->
I'm guessing the PAR values of these mounted in the hood should be similar to the horizontal mounted Spiral bulbs but maybe with better light distribution/better coverage along the length of the aquarium?
I'm using 1 20 watt bulb on the left socket and 1 10 watt bulb on the right socket. Hoping this would push the left side of the aquarium to medium light so I can grow a micro sword(lilaeopsis brasiliensis) carpet and then have low light on the right side of the aquarium to grow anubia, c. wendtii and c. parva and some flame moss.
Would that work to essentially try and split the aquarium into 2 light zones to grow different plants or is that a bad idea?
|10-15-2013 02:06 AM|
For a low maintenance office tank, I've found mosses, liverworts (fissidens, pellia), c. Parva, and Anubias to work well. They grow slow enough so you don't have to do so much trimming. I really like using c. Parva as a foreground carpeting plant. It fits the scale of a 10gal nicely.
|10-13-2013 10:07 PM|
|rininger85||awesome thread, tagging along just for future reference, the diagrams over the different lighting over the 2.5gal is hopefully going to help me with setting up my new 10 gal, been trying to decide on bulbs to put in my stock hood, so I think based on looking at what you have with one 14w spiral CFL horizontally mounted 3" above the water line I should be able to use two 13-14w spiral CFL's horizontally mounted 2-3" above the water line on my 10 gal in the stock hood and stay in the low-med light range... I'm setting the tank up to take to work and want to plant it to keep it low maintenance, and haven't made the investment to go CO2 on my tank at home, so definitely can't do it on my work tank...|
|01-26-2013 11:59 PM|
With these 13w bulbs, everything seems reasonable as far as the heat goes. After leaving them on since I bought them, nothing they are in contact with is hot. Barely even warm to be honest. The reflectors themselves get warm, but I wouldn't call them hot either.
Also, there's no way to fall in the tank unless the glass top was shifted way off the tank, and they are quite difficult to move.
I had concerns over the heat also, and I'm going to keep an eye on it. So far, so good.
|01-26-2013 11:52 PM|
Are those reflectors sitting on a glass or acrylic cover over the top of the tank? If so, they may overheat badly. If not, they may fall into the tank. I would hang them so there is room for air to circulate into the open end of the reflectors, and so they can't fall into the tank.
There will be less light going out through the sides and ends of the tank, once you put water in the tank. Much of the light will reflect off the glass back into the tank.
|01-26-2013 11:41 PM|
Aight! Lookin good! When you fill it with water the spillover won't be as bad. Black background A+
|01-26-2013 09:15 PM|
Got the 8.5" lights, and found Philips 13w 6500k bulbs. Four pack only $8.97 at HD.
It's bright lol. I'm glad I went with the 13w for now, without water or anything in the tank there is a lot of light spillage on the sides of the tank. The whole wall is lit up.
I'm going to black out the back of the tank somehow then probably spray paint the outside of the reflectors black.
|01-26-2013 06:04 PM|
|gregor||That's very helpful, thanks! I'm going to take your advice and grab 4 10" domes (if I can find them, 8.5 seems readily available) and put 4 13w 6500k bulbs in them right atop the glass.|
|01-26-2013 05:48 PM|
Almost forgot - I like to repeat this URL as much as I can because I personally think these dome lamps are A+++ WILL BUY AGAIN!!! for CFLs. They're more money than brooder lamps but they also keep light spill way down, which is my main b!tch with them. If you can hang them and not lay them down on your glass you could also put higher wattage bulbs in them to compensate the distance. I think they're a good product, and that price is half what the big box pet stores want for them.
Also, if you do want to go higher wattage than 23w, check e-bay for bulbs that photographers use. They have plenty of wattages you won't find at Lowes, etc..
|01-26-2013 05:41 PM|
Yea that thread has some interesting ideas doesn't it? Well, here is my thinking on the topic of wattage vs. penetration to the substrate etc.... If you have a new tank and you are still setting up your fertilization and CO2 methods and you don't currently have any high light plants, then starting at the low end and going up is better than starting bright and then dealing with the headache that will inevitably create, IMO. The price of CFL bulbs is so reasonable that swapping them out for higher or lower wattages is trivial really.
Look, the bottom line is that we want beautiful tanks, with healthy inhabitants, right? We all know that light drives the need for all other requirements. Ferts, CO2, animals, algae (and it's control) are all determined first by the amount of light energy available. I personally have a high light, CO2 driven, EI dosed, hugely productive (like major trim every week) 36" long tank with (3) 23w CFLs on it. Right next to it, I have a 15 gallon Aqueon kit tank with the 18" fluorescent bulb it came with, no CO2, no ferts, and 5 fish in it. I cull my trimmings from the bigger tank and plant that tank with them. I get as many compliments on that tank as I do the larger one. No, I can't grow HG or other high light plants in it (I think - I haven't tried but someday I might!) but the stems and moss and ferns are healthy and growing. I'm just not in there weekly with scissors. So, I guess it comes down to what you really want to do. Sometimes I wonder whether I would be happier with a super low tech tank with darned near no maintenance other than water changes...
Just keep in mind that if you're not OCD with your tanks, that the higher amount of light you put over it the more time and energy it will REQUIRE daily and/or weekly.
(big breath) So, to answer your question! I would start with 13 watt 6500k, and go from there.
HTH - Cheers
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